Stonecutters’ paradise

By: Louk Vreeswijk

Jun 24 2018

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Category: Asia, India

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Focal Length:14.3mm
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Elegant camels, mounted horsemen. and of course, as always, the graceful women … it’s as if we can appreciate these scenes from daily life even more when depicted in stone. Maybe it is because we can feel the pleasure the sculptors of Hampi must have had in cutting these reliefs.
The non-sculptured walls are impressive too. The irregular blocs of granite are cut and piled with admirable precision.

Granite rock wall in the Royal Enclosure, Hampi 2014

At several places we see how the stonecutters operated when cutting off pieces of granite boulders. Sometimes we can notice a clear plane of fracture with at the edge traces of the holes that marked the line where they wanted to split the rock.

Gateway at summit of Hemakuta hill, Hampi 2014

At other places we see how they made a beginning but – for whatever reason – did not finish the job.

Royal enclosure, Hampi 2014

Rock next to Saraswati temple, Hampi 2014

The erstwhile stonecutters and sculptors of Hampi may have vanished but, strolling this land of boulders and monuments, their presence is still palpable.

Photo of the week: Detail of the Great Platform in the Royal Enclosure, Hampi, Karnataka, India 2014

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